Hani: A Life Too Short by Jant Smith & Beauregard Tromp ( Jonathan Ball)
Despite some shortcomings, the latest offering from Jonathan ball publishing stable, a biography of famed ANC and South African Communist party warrior-scholar Chris Hani is an important piece of work. Gently narrated by Janet Smith and Beauregard Tromp, it is significant contribution to understanding arguably one of the most celebrated leaders to have come out of that broad and disparate church called the ANC. It is important to state up front that on this score – barring some obvious gaps – Smith and Tromp succeeded in giving the reader a beautifully crafted and, at times, powerful narrative on why the former General Secretary of the SACP and Chief of Staff of Umkhonto weSizwe (MK) is so revered. The book tells a story of Hani’s life, from his childhood in rural Transkei and education at Fort Hare University to the controversila memorandum of 1969, the crisis in the ANC camps in Angola in the 1960s and the heady dawn of freedom. Drawing on the interviews and the recollections of those who knew him, this vividly written book provides a detailed account of the life of a great South African.